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Health And Public Safety

BernCo, NMCAL Join Forces to Help People in Crisis

05/24/2016

Bernalillo County and the New Mexico Crisis and Access Line (NMCAL) have joined forces to provide expert crisis intervention services to county residents through the county’s 911 call system.

Callers can now be transferred directly to NMCAL by BernCo’s 911 dispatchers, eliminating unnecessary delays for people that need fast help to critical mental health counseling. The new service is available to people living in unincorporated Bernalillo County, outside the city limits.

NMCAL serves New Mexicans statewide as a mental health crisis line. The service is staffed by professional counselors in both English and Spanish, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Because of the broad awareness of the 911 emergency call system, this new partnership provides more immediate and direct access to professional help when people need it the most.

People can also call NMCAL directly at 1-855-NMCRISIS (662-7474.)

Click the image below to see a slideshow of the May 24, 2016 event. 

BernCo's Mental Health Awareness Day

 

“Bernalillo County is taking action to address unmet needs for more and better behavioral health services in our community,” Commission Chair Art De La Cruz says. “The team effort between Bernalillo County, the City of Albuquerque and the state of New Mexico is beginning to show results for Bernalillo County’s Behavioral Health Initiative.”

This service will be provided at no cost to Bernalillo County, since NMCAL is already funded by the state of New Mexico’s Human Services Department.

Depending on the severity of the call, 911 dispatchers can refer callers to NMCAL for direct counseling support, or dispatchers and counselors can work together while emergency responders are being dispatched to the person’s location.

This coordinated effort between NMCAL and BernCo’s 911 dispatchers improves immediate access to care for people in crisis, and provides much-needed support for emergency responders.

The new partnership with NMCAL is a crucial effort under the new Behavioral Health Initiative, designed to improve reliability and accessibility for behavioral health services to county residents.

A one-eighth percent gross receipts tax is expected to generate $17 million annually for the continued expansion of the local behavioral health system. The county is working closely with the City of Albuquerque to coordinate services and further develop plans.

If you or someone you know is in crisis, please call the New Mexico Crisis and Access Line at 1-855-NMCRISIS (662-7474) or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). These services are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and are available in both English and Spanish.

If you or someone you know needs emergency medical services, please dial 911.

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